Engineering

Sailing through work (1960s-1980s)

Born in Reedham at Ship Cottages next to the river and the swing bridge, Roy left school wanting to work on boats. At age 16 he began an apprenticeship with Bell Boats, Brundall. I was born in January 1942 in Reedham at Ship Cottages next to the river by the Ship Inn and the swing […]

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The Air Force Engineer (1957-1995)

Mike’s working life was in the Air Force, on the engineering rather than the military side. After a tour of duty in Cyprus, he became a nuclear specialist in the days of the Cold War, where top secret manoeuvres were carried out against nuclear attack. Based in Norfolk, he retired from the RAF and wrote […]

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The Assistant Engineer (1947-1951)

Stanley was an engineer and labour master at Beech House Gressenhall from 1947-1951. From 1947 to 1951 approximately I worked at Beech House, Gressenhall, sometimes called The Workhouse, and lived on the site at Cherry Tree Cottage. I was 31 in 1947 and was employed as Assistant Engineer and Labour Master. My wife was Laundry […]

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The career of an Electrical Technician (1957-2000)

Richard began an electrical craft apprenticeship in Lowestoft in 1957. He worked his way up through electrical engineering positions in Norwich and the Home Counties. He returned to East Anglia to a trailer and container company, where he had responsibility for all electrical aspects and a supervisory role. Redundancies led to a new career in […]

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The changing man. Sopwith apprentice to sports lecturer (2016)

John shares the story of his working life of change beginning with his early career as an apprentice in the motor industry with Armstrong Siddeley. John had a strong impetus to pass on skills and knowledge as evidenced by his activities in sports as a participant and as a coach. His desire to train others […]

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The Colman’s steam engineer (1948-1983)

  Alan worked at Colman’s as a steam fitter and engineer and later at Eastern Counties Newspapers. I was born in 1933 and left school at 14. My first job was at Brett’s the cabinet makers – they had a little factory in Chapelfield and I went there with a load of tools my parents […]

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The Electronic Systems Designer (1960-2005)

James was always interested in electrical engineering and design. He finished a successful career in the Royal Air Force at RAF Coltishall before beginning his second career designing computers at the start of the ‘computer age’. James worked for clients including United Dairies and the Royal Navy, and designed products for a number of companies […]

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The Medical Designer (1932-1994)

Bob gives details of his work as a medical systems designer, and beginning his working life in the circus! My first job was an illegal one. During the school Christmas holidays when under the age of 14, (1935/36) a school friend suggested we applied to a circus that was coming to a local venue, Alexandra […]

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The Millwright’s Story (1940s-2000)

Peter began work at F. Flowerdew and Son in Norwich aged 16 in 1944 and trained as an agricultural engineer before becoming a millwright. He worked all over Norfolk and many parts of East Anglia. First Jobs My family had got connections with farming and I’d spent all my holidays working on the farm.  In […]

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